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Article

10 Nov 2012

Author:
Lydia Polgreen, New York Times

As coal boosts Mozambique, the rural poor are left behind

Most of Mozambique’s people live in rural areas, and… [s]ince commercial farming scarcely exists…small-scale, family-based agriculture is…in many cases the only, source of income for the vast majority of Mozambicans. But the new gas and coal deals are wrapped up in multibillion-dollar megaprojects that rarely create large numbers of jobs or foster local entrepreneurship… coal deposits in Moatize represent one of the biggest untapped reserves in the world, and the Brazilian mining company Vale has placed a big bet on it. But to get to the coal, hundreds of villagers living atop it had to be moved… Earlier this year, the people of Cateme sent a letter to local government officials and Vale demanding that their complaints about the resettlement process be addressed…“There were some problems after the relocation,” said Vale’s country manager, Ricardo Saad, adding that the company was trying to fix them…

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